Admit it or don’t, social media sites and online games are productivity killers!
Like you, I also experienced being distracted by Facebook, Instagram dog photos, mukbang videos, and Candy Crush. However, I know all these have to stop. No matter how hard it could be, I have to do do something to resist checking my mobile phone constantly.
As a rationale mammal, I completely know that I shouldn’t be relying on a mobile app to correct some sort of a mobile-induced distraction. Nonetheless, I am pretty much driven to give every option a try. Thus, with a gallon of determination and a little help from Google and Google Play Store, I stumbled upon Seekrtech’s mobile app named “Forest”:
You wouldn’t believe how this miracle worker helped me increase my hours of work and study. Before using this free and downloadable application, I used to have more time wasted on my phone than on my desktop. By the time I realize it, almost three (3) hours of readings have already gone. Well, that may be nothing for others, but if you are a working law student, like me, even thirty minutes is precious. Indeed, this app helped me a lot to STAY FOCUSED and get my head on the game.
So how does it work?
I wouldn’t bore you with a step-by-step guide on how to use Forest. I’d leave that to your own discovery or exploration, should you decide to give this application a try. But basically, as this app is called “Forest”, it works by making you plant and grow “digital trees”, depending on the period of time you have successfully stayed away from your mobile phone.
So far, here are some of my recently planted “forests”:
The app allows you to set the number of minutes within which it will function. Minimum is ten (10) minutes while max is one hundred twenty (120) minutes. During such time, Forest will warn you not to open social media and other mobile apps for to do so will kill your tree or bush. Then, each time you successfully complete a given period of time to “stay focused” by staying away from your phone, the app rewards you with a certain number of coins.
The Forest app has a bunch of species of trees to choose from. However, you may only get them after collecting 800 coins or so. But don’t worry, there’s a freebie tree given to you to get everything started.
There are also other types of plants that you may include in building your “forest”, like grasses and bushes, though I haven’t tried getting some for myself (I still want to explore and get trees before I do that).
Meanwhile, there are various environment-inspired background sounds, called “ambient sounds”, which you can get as well as you collect more coins. So far, what I have by default is the Forest Rain, which I seldom use.
So, yeah, is this effective?
With this, I am constrained to qualify.
At the outset, one has to remember that this Forest app works if the user wants and is determined to make it work to his advantage.
Suppose you set the time within which the Forest app will put your mobile phone to what I call “time out” mode. It’s nice if you really work on your tasks during such time. But what if you go somewhere else like play games or surf the net in your laptop? Get the point?
What I’m trying to say is determination and discipline are [still] key to successfully overcoming your distractions. I am, for one, darn serious to increase my productivity so I can use my entire 24 hours to completing or accomplishing tasks — meaningful sleep included (which I’d like to talk about in my future blog posts…). So, I enjoyed my time out and focused moments while I used this app. Hence, I daresay, it indeed worked for me.
But if you’ll use it for no other purpose than growing trees and accomplishing nothing, then we’ll have a problem with that.
Forest app is a great productivity tool. It has all the features to allow you to focus both in a fun and rewarding way.
However, you gotta help yourself too.